Fitness and Bodybuilding

2000 NPC Nationals Information
By Jim Manion - NPC President

    For most of the 1990's, the NPC National Championships have been held in the southern or midwestern portions of the country, be it Dallas, Orlando, New Orleans, Atlanta or Fort Lauderdale. The last time the show ventured north of the Mason-Dixon line was in 1991, when Kevin Levrone and Kim King were crowned the NPC National champions in the home town of the NPC - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It's been even longer since the contest was held in New York City, but it was really only one-third of the event, as promoter Steve Karel held the NPC Women's National Bodybuilding Championships there in 1988. This was in the days before the events were combined and before the NPC began sanctioning fitness contests.

    Therefore, New York City, home the past six years to the NPC Team Universe Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships, several IFBB Mr. and Ms. Olympia events and perennial home to the IFBB Night Of The Champions, will finally get a taste of the preeminent, amateur bodybuilding and fitness competition in the United States with the annual NPC National Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships, once again courtesy of Steve Karel of Stonecutter Event Promotions.

    This is the NPC's crown jewel event and the final IFBB Pro qualifier for the new millennium year. Steve's excellent record in promoting this event speaks for itself.

    Although it may sound presumptuous to call this event the premiere amateur event in the United States, take a look at some of the IFBB pro's who've won the overall title since the first NPC Nationals in 1982. As the NPC is quick to point out, the foremost competitor is the all time Mr. Olympia Lee Haney (1982) and then there's the first six time Ms. Olympia Cory Everson (1984). Other's in this elite class include Mike Christian, Sue Myers, Bob Paris, Gary Strydom, Shawn Ray, Kim King, Vince Taylor, Sue Price, Troy Zuccolotto, Dale Tomita, Kevin Levrone, Michele Ralabate, Mike Francois, Nikki Fuller, Paul DeMayo, John Sherman, Alq` Gurley, Paula Suzuki, Don Long, Susie Curry, Willie Stalling, Gayle Moher, Tom Prince, Nicole Bass, Minna Lessig, Jason Arntz, Brenda Raganot, Mandy Blank and 1999 overall champions Melanie Webb, Vilma Caez and Aaron Maddron.

    To think that they were only the overall winners! In the NPC National Bodybuilding Championships, each of the men's and women's class winners are eligible to apply for IFBB pro status. Some of these class winners who've gone on to attain star status in the IFBB include people like Lee Labrada, Chris Bongiovani, Porter Cottrell, Laura Bass, Rich Gaspari, Denise Masino, Jay Cutler, Johnny Moya and Vickie Gates.

    In NPC Fitness, those that have gone on to great success in IFBB Fitness that only placed in the pro qualifying positions include 1999 IFBB Fitness Olympia champion Mary Yockey, Debi Lee Stern, Stacy Simons, Laura Mak, and Karen Hulse. As you can see, the list for bodybuilding and fitness is strong and impressive. Both in the overall category and the qualifying positions.

    As an IFBB pro qualifier, each weight class winner of the men's and women's bodybuilding contest earn their IFBB pro cards, while in the fitness, the top two in each of the three height classes are awarded their IFBB pro fitness cards. For those unfamiliar with the new height classes, which were just instituted in 1999, they are Up To And Including 5'2"; Over 5'2" And Up To And Including 5'4-«"; Over 5'4-«". Fitness competitors should also be aware that they are expected to perform the six mandatory strength/flexibility movements within their two minute fitness routine.

    The schedule of events starts Thursday night, November 9th with contestant weigh-in's/check-in's starting at 7 p.m. The final weigh-in's/check-in's will be on Friday, November 10th at 9:30 a.m. The competition begins that same evening with the men's bodybuilding and women's fitness One Piece Swimsuits pre-judging at 5:30 p.m. Saturday morning, November 11th, starts at 9 a.m. with the women's bodybuilding and women's fitness Two Piece Swimsuit and Fitness Routine pre-judging, and the finals for all three contests that same night at 7 p.m.

    With the 1999 event having one of the largest number of competitors entered, and the expanded number of competitor's that are expected to enter the contests this year, promoter Steve Karel sees this as a triumphant return to The Big Apple. The venue will be the Hammerstein Ballroom at the Manhattan Center, 34th & 8th, New York City.

    Since this is the premiere amateur bodybuilding and fitness event in America, many major sponsors have already signed on to the event. The title sponsor is Bodyonics Pinnacle, while the presenting sponsors are GNC and Schwinn Cycling & Fitness. The feature sponsor is Biochem Sports and Fitness Systems. Other sponsors signed to date include Universal Nutrition, ProLab, Worldwide Sports Nutrition, Hammer Strength, Champion Nutrition, Human Development Technologies, Muscle & Fitness/FLEX, and NPC News.

    The host hotel will be the New Yorker Hotel. Call the reservation number at (800) 764-4680. Ask for the special NPC Nationals rate. This is where all the athletes will weigh-in.

    Airline travel can be procured through Maritz Travel, (Laura Colvin), at 1-888-467-0905. Again, be sure to ask for the special NPC Nationals fare.

    Demand for ticket's are bound to be high and are available by calling Pam Betz at (407) 876-4467 between the hours of 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The tentative pricing structure is as follows; there will be open seating for all Pre-judging's. Admission to the Men's Bodybuilding/Women's Fitness and the Women's Bodybuilding/Women's Fitness portion is $25.00 for each session. The Finals will be split between $100.00, $75.00 and $50.00.

    This contest will get major television air play on FOX Sports Net's MuscleSport USA program just as in past years. The 1999 events were shown as three separate one-hour features. It looks good for that to happen again for the 2000 events. You can double check the programing schedule by logging on to

    Competitors remember that you must have previously qualified for this event in an NPC national qualifier. All entries must be received 30 days in advance of the event and you must already be a registered member of the NPC for 2000. You can not sign up for an NPC membership the weekend of the event. To ensure that all your entry information is received, we recommend that you send your entry forms via Certified Mail with a Return Receipt so that you have proof that somebody signed for your package and received it. Be sure to bring that Return Receipt with you to the athlete weigh-in's.

    As a tip, don't rely on your trainer, significant other, gym owner or sponsor to send in your application. Do it yourself. It will be one less worry you have as you prepare for the event.

    Don't miss your opportunity to witness the crowing of some new IFBB pros and the best amateur bodybuilders and women's fitness competitors in the entire country. It's a bodybuilding/fitness extravaganza you don't want to miss!

    For NPC National Championships information on sponsorship, merchandising and media, contact Steve Karel, Stonecutter Event Promotions, Inc. At (212) 289-5033 or write to 201 East 87th Street; #24R; New York, N.Y., 10128. For exhibitor and entry form information, contact Pam Betz at (407) 876-4467, 104 11th Avenue, Windermere, Florida, 34786 or via e-mail: